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Florida Consumer Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law for Florida on
Q: Can a car dealership tell me who I can and can't have insurance through?

I bought a car from a buy here pay here lot. Can they dictate who I get insurance from?

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on May 11, 2021

Depends on the terms of the purchase contract.

2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Personal Injury, Business Law and Federal Crimes for Florida on
Q: Is my CPA at fault for our identity theft? She was hacked some months ago and should have cyber security in place.

The IRS would not accept our 2020 tax filing because one was already filed. Our 3rd Stimulus check was also stolen because our CPA was hacked. She later informed me of this and said some of her other client's data was also stolen and used. She should have adequate cyber security in place... Read more »

Linda Liang
Linda Liang answered on Apr 20, 2021

You said "She should have adequate cyber security in place". Do you have reasons to believe she does not and the fact that she does not caused the hack?

These are key findings to determine whether you have a cause of action based on negligence.

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2 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy and Consumer Law for Florida on
Q: Can I get a uncompleted Bankruptcy off my credit report?

I filed for bankruptcy a few years back to hold off a foreclosure action. I was able to sell the house and did not complete the bankruptcy filling or the foreclosure. The bankruptcy is still showing on my credit report, how do I get it removed?

Melissa Cain
Melissa Cain answered on Apr 16, 2021

Your bankruptcy will stay on your credit report, whether or not you completed your case. It is likely to stay on there for 7-10 years from the filing date.

If you are looking to finance a large purchase in the future, you should develop a working relationship with a bank you like and...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Banking for Florida on
Q: If my bank closed my checking account do they have a legal right to keep my money that was left in it?

I am a small business owner in FL. I received an EIDL loan from the government on March 16 for $55,900 to help me keep my business afloat during the pandemic. I had the funds deposited into my business checking account at BlueVine, and had no issues until Mar 29, when I suddenly received an email... Read more »

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Apr 12, 2021

While I am not sure who or what "BlueVine" is, unless it is a legitimate regulated commercial bank or credit union you may be out of luck. And in any event, since you are obligated to repay the entire $59,500 to the US Small Business Administration or to the US Treasury, I strongly advise... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Car Accidents and Consumer Law for Florida on
Q: We bought a used car, and the brakes failed while driving home, causing an accident. What is the dealer responsibility?

Nobody was hurt in the accident. ABout 3K damage was done to the car. The brakes failed. A police report was written documenting that fact. The dealer doesn't want to take responsibility for anything and expects the buy to pay for all repairs caused by the accident. Also, the dealer... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Apr 8, 2021

That cannot be answered without analyzing all of the facts of the situation, including a review of the purchase contract. If you bought the car "AS IS", that would be a strike against you, but in limited circumstances, that can be dealer liability even with that kind of contract. Seek a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law for Florida on
Q: Can I sue my bank for neglece and stealing money from me?

My bank Space Coast Credit on two different occasions the bank took my money the first time they took my full SSI check and the second time only left me $211.00. I explained to the that I am on SSI and I depend on my check to pay rent and bills and rather than them take my money in one lump sum... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Apr 3, 2021

It appears that the bank set off funds in your account because you owed the bank money for some reason. If this is the case, yes, they can do it.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: I don't want to renew 1 yr lease and offered 3 months and I'd be out, landlord said no during the pandemic

florida

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Mar 29, 2021

You don't have the right to a 3-month lease extension, if that's what you are asking.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Business Law for Florida on
Q: A retailer refunded me for a larger amount than what they were supposed to. In the state of florida can they persue me?
Keith Kanouse
Keith Kanouse answered on Mar 21, 2021

Yes they can if they want to but the right thing to do is to return the excess amount paid to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law, Consumer Law and Contracts for Florida on
Q: Can a denied motion have a second hearing without a motion for re-hearing after appeal?

Hi, I won an appeal on a default judgement case for my motion to set aside the default judgement, which was denied in the lower court. The appellate court remanded the case to the lower court for an evidentiary hearing. Recently the plaintiff has scheduled a hearing on my original motion to set... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Mar 1, 2021

If it was remanded for an evidentiary hearing, it appears that the plaintiff properly scheduled a hearing. Be prepared at the hearing to offer evidence, as the appellate court ruled.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Products Liability for Florida on
Q: Im a senior citizen Bought an HVAC for $5k. its never worked. 12 year warranty but dlr installer, mfg or dist wont back

I have all documentation and proof from point of purchase to defect determination. Unit has never worked and the installer/dealer won't fix or replace. There is a valid 12 year warranty but, no one from the manufacturer on down, will acknowledge responsibility. I am 63 (senior in FL) and no... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Feb 23, 2021

Contact the Florida Attorney General's Consumer Affairs Office. If the unit was paid for through a program that program should be notified .

You have a right to sue them and can sue them in small claims court.

2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Real Estate Law, Civil Litigation and Municipal Law for Florida on
Q: Can I park in front of my Lot/house on the street according to the bylaws below?

No vehicle shall be parked anywhere but on

paved areas intended for that purpose. Parking on lawns or landscaped areas is prohibited,

unless specifically approved or designated for such purpose. Lot Owners' or Residents'

automobiles shall be parked in the garage or... Read more »

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage answered on Feb 9, 2021

That question is impossible to answer without seeing the plat and the location of your lot on the plat. While parking on roadways in front of your own house are generally permitted, there are exceptions for certain roadways and you cannot park on the roadway if you lot is located on one of the... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts and Civil Litigation for Florida on
Q: What's a pleading? Is there a template?

I am the party (individual) initiating the action against another individual who operates a business. I have already submitted a statement of claim which was accepted and the process has moved forward. Now I need to submit a pleading and I'm pretty lost.

Barbara Billiot Stage
Barbara Billiot Stage answered on Jan 29, 2021

There are a mountain of various types of pleadings and a lawyer would need to know what you are trying to achieve or if you have been ordered by the court to submit a pleading, then the wording of the pleading. This site is not meant to teach someone how to proceed pro se with litigation. It is... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Consumer Law and Civil Rights for Florida on
Q: I need help with a very complicated situation. Please read the details for more information. You havent seen this before

I walked outside of my home this morning to find my car had gone missing. I called the police department to report it had been stolen. The police department stated the car hadn’t been stolen but was rather repossessed. I purchased the vehicle cash from a private owner in 2018. I called the... Read more »

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Dec 22, 2020

If you really believe that your legal situation is "unique" and the experienced lawyers answering legal questions here on Justia "have not seen this situation before" you are badly mistaken.

This situation is called "stealing." However, as you recently...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts and Real Estate Law for Florida on
Q: Who may I sue in a new home construction sale, the builder or the seller?

I signed for a new construction home, now that is almost finished they did a different kitchen, as explained by the seller, the ceiling is low than the offered by the seller, and principal bathroom was offered with two sinks and they put only one.

Richard Paul Zaretsky
Richard Paul Zaretsky answered on Dec 11, 2020

Not enough information but enough to see you need an attorney to review the contract and the events leading up to entering into the contract. Based on that review it should be able to be determined if you have a chance to get damages, or if you already purchased it, have you waived rights to sue... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law for Florida on
Q: I was sued by credit card and settled at pre-trial. Trial was dismissed without prejudice. What does that mean?

Does dismissed without prejudice mean that they can sue me again for the remainder of the balance. I asked this several times and have it also in email where they said that this would suffice for the entire balance of the account and would take care of it all. Now I see this this. Shouldn't it... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Dec 6, 2020

Yes, it means that they can refile it if you fail to make the payments as you agreed. If it were dismissed "with prejudice" that would preclude them from refiling.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Criminal Law and Traffic Tickets for Florida on
Q: After 30 days of being on hold from another county what is the process of inmate being release if it was vop

My brother violated with a misdemeanor traffic charge it’s his first vop and Columbia county gave the crime time served only problem is dec 4 will be his 30th day lock up without them coming to get him what would be the process of having him released or who could I talk to about him being... Read more »

Jonathan Blecher
Jonathan Blecher answered on Dec 2, 2020

You should retain an attorney to seek a bond on the probation matter, or release on recognizance, with the judge and prosecutor on the probation case.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts and Small Claims for Florida on
Q: I live in Aus. A business in Florida accepted a 500$ deposit towards a future purchase, have sought a refund, ignored.

Advice provided.

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron answered on Nov 18, 2020

You definitely can file a small claim, and during the pandemic, Fla. courts are doing everything remotely (video or telephonic hearings). However, when the time arrives for them to start up in-person again, you might have a problem. The first stage in small claims, after filing and serving the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Estate Planning for Florida on
Q: My mother had 5 beneficiaries on her annuity she made me power of attorney specifically to remove 3 of those beneficiari

From her annuity leaving me and my sister Do I have the power as POA to remove individuals requested by my mother She could not sign the papers herself changing beneficiary because of the coronavirus which she died from And because access to her was restricted she gave me power of attorney to take... Read more »

Steven J. Fromm
Steven J. Fromm answered on Nov 15, 2020

If you have not had any luck with the insurance company, your next step is to hire an estate attorney to talk to their legal department. If that does not help, then the insurance company will file most likely file an "interpleader" and turn the proceeds over to the court, to have them... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Copyright and Business Law for Florida on
Q: Is it true that I don't need permission to use a song in my streaming service if it's free (and I make money from ads)

I'm starting a small music streaming service. And one of the bands I was talking to said that they do not own the licenses to their music. But would like to be on the platform. They mentioned to me that, to use their music, I do not have to pay royalties, so long as the platform is free, as... Read more »

Allison Higgins
Allison Higgins answered on Nov 12, 2020

This sounds like a situation where you will need to hire a lawyer. There are a lot of moving parts that need to be parsed out. You may want to look into getting a blanket license like many radio stations have.

Look into hiring a copyright lawyer that has experience with musicians and...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law for Florida on
Q: Can I sue the supermarket for this?

So I went to get yogurt at the grocery store, this store doesn't sell any pet food or any pet items whatsoever. The container that I bought is in the normal dairy area for human consumption. I went home and on the container it says "for cats and dogs, not for human consumption in small... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard answered on Nov 8, 2020

Did it kill you or make you sick? No. So what are your damages? None. Without damages, generally you cannot sue.

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